Body Fat. Most of us have it. We all need it, and not only if there is a sudden shortage of food and we have to burn our fat stores. We also need it to cushion and protect our organs and deeper tissues. Fat is there to protect us, to keep us warm, and help keep us healthy. This ridiculous idea that being super skinny is a good thing, is just as preposterous as considering a person with a large amount of excess body fat, to be healthy as well.
Imagine a field full of lovely horses, all of whom seem to appear in nice shape except one. You notice you can see the bones of this lone horse and it really doesn't seem to have any muscle not to mention fat. Do you think “Oh look at that nice healthy, skinny horse”? No, chances are pretty good you thought there was something wrong with it and maybe it’s sick, maybe it has worms, you horse people are probably thinking it needs to have it’s teeth done. Regardless of the diagnosis, we all except that, the animal is sick, we understand that the horse being skinny is a symptom of a larger underlying issue.
Now that we understand that skinny is a symptom, it’s time to understand that fat is also a symptom. Just like worms were the reason that horse was skinny, those of us who are fat have underlying issues that cause our fat stores to expand.
I’ve struggled with excess fat stores for years, because I’m super aware of my body, I’ve been able to start putting together the pieces of my fat puzzle. At first I did what everyone says I should do. Diet and exercise. That fixes all “weight” issues right? Even though this may help, those of us who have been down this road know it doesn’t solve our problem. Why doesn’t it solve our problem? Because fat is a symptom not a disease.
Lets look at this a little closer. We'll start with a badly broken leg. Imagine you can’t walk for 6 months. You get less than normal exercise and even though you limit your calorie intake, your fat stores still seem to expand. Did you come down with “the fat disease?” No, fat is the symptom of a broken leg.
Now lets look at another situation. You're at the doctor's office with a cough, you have the flu. There are three more people in waiting room also with coughs. You start talking only to discover one is a smoker and has a smokers cough, the next has weird environmental allergies that cause the cough and the last person has had the cough forever and still can’t figure it out. Funny thing though no one mentioned they had “the coughing disease.” I wonder why that could be? Right, coughing is a symptom that can be caused by a huge variety of factors just like fat.
People often assume that just like the cigarette smoker, the fat person has chosen to be this way, and inflicts this misery upon his/her self. I’m sure in some cases that’s true and those would be the people that reduce their body fat stores with diet and exercise, but just like the cigarette smoker who at one point could have said no with ease, the habit starts to change the bodies chemistry and hormone levels change. This leads to false information sending signals to the brain, and just like the cigarette smoker it gets harder and harder to quit because the body is saying it really needs to be fed this way.
Just because we haven’t been sick doesn’t mean our digestive systems' are capable breaking down and assimilating the things we put in our bodies. Even whole foods, or foods considered to be health foods, can not be digested by everyone. Do these people with less than perfect digestive systems have “the fat disease”? No, they have digestive issues and are producing larger fat stores as a symptom.
We are very complex beings and physical issues are not the only reason we experience symptoms. The person with the unexplained cough may have no physical issue that would cause a cough but for some reason, and yes there is always a reason, that cough will not go away. Some people may think I’m crazy but it’s becoming more, and more well known that our emotional stress can cause symptoms. This idea actually may be more widely accepted in regards to body fat because we accept the idea of emotional eating. Do people with a tremendous amount of emotional, or spiritual stress have “the fat disease”? No, they have emotion complications that need to be resolved before they can resolve the symptom of having excess fat stores.
Now that we have established fat is a symptom of a greater underlying issue, we need to consider the statement “obesity is an epidemic”. That doctors office waiting room was full of people coughing. Is coughing an epidemic? No because there was multiple people with the same symptom for different reasons. The flu may become an epidemic but the people suffering from coughs for other reasons were not part of that epidemic. There are so many reasons and factors involved regarding the body’s fat storing process that it would be near impossible to pinpoint one specific factor as being an epidemic.
Should we be concerned as a society about the growth of our populations fats stores? I really don’t think concern is going to get us anywhere. We need to be empathetic and compassionate. We need to end the fat shaming, and not just of other people, but of ourselves. Stop feeling like you or other people are doing something wrong because you have fat. Start thinking and feeling about what’s going on in your body. Help people to forget about their fat and focus on learning to heal themselves, only then will we be able to make a difference see the scales start coming once again into balance.
Live life to the fullest,
Hi, I'm Cyndi Bird, hobby homesteader, aspiring writer, amature photographer, art and craft enthousiast and wanna be cook.